Civil Rights

3 Reasons Not to Confess to a Crime

When someone is facing criminal charges, there is a lot of pressure put on them to confess to the crime – whether they committed the crime or not. The police may interrogate you and tell you they have all the evidence they need, but...

August 2018

3 Reasons to Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

We have seen it time and again, clients come to us after they have talked to the police.  Each client had good intentions in speaking with the police; they thought it would help their case. Maybe the officer said “If you confess now, we’ll...

August 2018

3 Things to Do Immediately After A DUI Charge

If you’ve been charged with a DUI, whether it’s your first charge, your fifth charge, or somewhere in between, you need to hire an attorney. A DUI conviction can affect your freedom and livelihood. It could result in the loss, or at least temporary...

August 2018

3 Unexpected Consequences of a Domestic Violence Conviction

Before you decide to plea to a domestic violence charge, or decide to represent yourself in your case, be aware that there are unexpected consequences that come along with a conviction. These collateral consequences can affect where you live, where you work and what...

June 2018

Bail Able

Division III has recently held that courts ordering “cash only” bail violate CrR 3.2(a). See City of Yakima v. Mollett, No. 20548-7-III, Div. III (2003). For years attorneys and defen- dants have felt “cash only” bail is a violation of the court rule and the state constitution. Fi- nally, an attorney and defendant have been passionate enough about the cause that it has been brought before Division III.

By Lance M. Hester, April 2003

Civil Rights: Divested and Restored

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has again put practitioners on notice to be careful in advising their clients if and when their gun rights have been restored under state statutes. In United States v. Brailey, No. 04-30083, May 19, 2005, the Ninth Circuit upheld the conviction for the unlawful possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9).

By Wayne Fricke, July 2005

Crawford and 911 Tapes!

In State v. Davis, 2005 WL 1115865 (May 12, 2005), the Supreme Court decided the is- sue of whether evidence of 911 calls violated a defendant’s Sixth Amendment right to confrontation under the Supreme Court’s decision in Crawford v. Washington, 541 U.S. 36 (2004).

By Brett Purtzer, July 2005

Don't Come Knocking with a Civil Arrest Warrent

State v. Thompson, Supreme Court of Washington, Docket No. 72997-2, June 24, 2004, is a great case regarding statutory construction and reality in assessing a detectives actions and prosecutor’s assertions.

By Monte Hester, July 2004

Exceptional Sentences Unconstitutional

The tandem cases of Blakely v. Washington, 124 S.Ct. 2531, 159 L.Ed. 2d 403 (2004) and Ap- prendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466, 120 S.Ct. 2348, 147 L.Ed. 2d 435 (2000), have rendered the SRAs unconstitutional to the extent that the SRAs authorize a court to grant an exceptional

By Brett Purtzer, November 2004

Federal Drug Trafficking - What to Expect

Drug trafficking cases are more common than you may think. In fact, almost a third of federal criminal cases involve drug trafficking. The most commonly trafficked drug, according to the United States Sentencing Commission is Meth. Being charged with drug trafficking can be scary...

August 2018

Federal Environmental Crimes: The Basics

Some environmental crimes are so obscure, many of us never even know they exist. But actually, they are the most commonly charged crime for organizations. In fact, 33% of all crimes committed by organizations are environmental crimes. Organizations are defined as corporations, partnerships, unions,...

June 2018

Fourth Amendment Applies to Individuals Facing Trial

Recently, the Ninth Circuit decided the case of U.S. vs. Scott, 04-10090, (September 9, 2005), holding that police must have probable cause to search an individual released pending trial pursuant to conditions of release.

By Wayne Fricke, October 2005

Hear Today, Gone Tomorrow

The Ninth Circuit in USA v. Danielson, 325 F3rd 1054, filed March 24, 2003, decided that the government cannot use information from a defendant concerning trial strategy.

By Monte Hester, July 2003

Piercing Qualified Immunity

Part of our practice includes representing individuals who have had their civil rights violated by law enforcement. These cases are very difficult because of the positive image most jurors have of law enforcement and the usual lack of independent witnesses to verify a civil rights violation.

By Brett Purtzer, April 2014

Put This in Your Pipe

In State v. Heritage, 20617-3-III (2002), a juvenile was convicted on stipulated facts of possession of drug paraphernalia after her motion to suppress seized evidence (a pipe) and her incriminating statement was denied.

By Monte Hester, January 2003

Reality of Police Power

Justice Souter, in Bruce Edward Brendlin, Petitioner, v. California, 551 U.S. ____ 2007, No. 06-8120, delivered an opinion that when an officer makes a traffic stop and a passenger is seized as well the driver, the passenger may challenge the constitutionality of the stop under the Fourth Amendment.

By Lance M. Hester, August 2007


On June 29, 2006, the Washington Supreme Court rendered a decision once again uphold- ing open trials for the public. In State v. Modest, Washington Supreme Court Docket No. 76458-1 filed June 29, 2006, the court held that the trial court committed an error of constitu- tional magnitude when it held that a courtroom be fully closed to a co-defendant and the pub- lic during a joint trial without satisfying the requirements set forth in State v. Bone-Club, 128 Wn.2nd 254, 906 P.2d 325 (1995).

By Wayne Fricke, July 2006

Understanding Nursing Home Injuries

If you have a parent or loved one in a nursing home, you are probably well aware of how difficult the following situation would be: You have done your homework and entrusted the facility with the care of your loved one. So, when an...

September 2018

Vindictive Prosecution in the Ninth Circuit

With the decision in State v. Korum, 157 Wn.2d 614 (2006) fresh in most attorney’s minds regarding prosecutorial vindictiveness, it is refreshing to see that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals can objectively review a case and not only cite the appropriate law, but also apply the law to the facts to reach the appropriate result. U.S. v. Jenkins, decided July 17, 2007, is such a case.

By Brett Purtzer, August 2007

What Are They Thinking?

Our United States Supreme Court, that non-political body that takes an oath swearing to uphold the U.S. Constitution and to follow the principal of Stare Decisis, has ruled in Hudson v. Michigan, 04-1360, that a violation of the “knock and announce” rule as it relates to the serv- ice of a search warrant is of no consequence because if the parties would have done it cor- rectly, they still would have discovered the evidence.

By Monte Hester, July 2006

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